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Back East

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iTunes Review

The pianoless sax-trio format (sax, bass, drums) has yielded superb albums throughout jazz history, including such gems as Sonny Rollins’ Way Out West, Joe Henderson’s State of the Tenor, and Branford Marsalis’ Trio Jeepy. Here, Joshua Redman uses the trio format to his advantage, coming up with a consistently entertaining, creatively arranged, and wonderfully played slate of songs. The Rollins sway is readily apparent: Two tracks here, “I’m an Old Cowhand” and “Wagon Wheels,” appeared on Rollins’ aforementioned 1957 masterpiece (albeit with different arrangements), but Rollins’ influence is even more perceptible in Redman’s quick wit, his respect for the melodies, and his underlying tenderness. (In addition, the swinging opener, “Surrey with the Fringe on Top,” which Redman handles with great flair and taste, is also a longtime staple of the Rollins repertoire.) Redman switches to soprano on his Eastern-flavored original “Zarafah” and craftily trades lines with fellow tenor Joe Lovano on Wayne Shorter’s “Indian Song.” Redman’s father Dewey, who passed away following this recording, joins in on John Coltrane’s “India,” and he has the trio spotlight to himself on the closing track, his own “GJ.” Thanks to vibrant interaction with his sidemen and his own effervescent improvisations, the younger Redman offers one of his most rewarding sets.

Customer Reviews

Redman Returns to His Roots

Although it was Brad Mehldau--at least in recent years--who coined the phrase "the art of the trio," Redman could easily have done so as well, but for his desire to collaborate with different types of sounds and ensembles. In Back East, Redman demonstrates his melodic and harmonic talents vis-a-vis the bass and drum saxophone trio. Prior to this release, Redman has only documented this side of himself in small snipits (e.g., "Trinkle Tinkle," from his debut WB release, "Moose the Mooche," from his sophomore effort Wish), despite the fact that he toured extensively with a trio compising Christian McBride and Brian Blade in the years immediately following the Freedom in the Groove tour in 1996-97. For anyone who was privileged enough to see that tour (which, by the way, also opened up with Redman's trio-ized Miles Davis standard "The Surrey with the Fringe on Top"), Back East is a must have. Back East puts Joshua Redman on center stage--where he belongs--and also allows him to showcase his maturity and longevity, since breaking onto the jazz scene more than 16 years ago as a "young lion." In case it wasn't already clear, Redman has earned his eternal place in jazz lore. Back East also pairs the grown-up Joshua Redman with his late father Dewey Redman, something that hasn't been documented since Josh was barely more than a teenager.


Joshua Redman has grown to a unique style,where as he combine different rhythmic, melodies and harmonic sound.Making himself as one of the best saxopone players of his generation.We here on this album were Joshua has so many sound going through his mind that he include others saxophone players with him to get to the level of intensity.Joshua also has the help from the greatest jazzmen,he give us a revise composition by John Coltrane India with the help of Dewey Redman making this a four star recording.

I've been waiting for "Zarafah."

I had searched high and low on the internet trying to find Redman's recording of "Zarafah," after hearing him play it at the Hollywood Bowl. That was the highlight of the night for me. Now it's finally available. I recommend that if you're just looking at this page wondering what to expect, listen to the previews.


Born: February 1, 1969 in Berkeley, CA

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Every few years it seems as if the jazz media go out of their way to hype one young artist, overpraising him to such an extent that it is easy to tear him down when the next season arrives. In the early '90s, Joshua Redman briefly became a media darling, but in his case, he largely deserved the attention. A talented bop-based tenor man, Redman (who will probably never be an innovator) is a throwback to the styles of Red Holloway and Gene Ammons, but also has an inquisitive spirit and can play intriguing...
Full Bio
Back East, Joshua Redman
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  • $10.99
  • Genres: Jazz, Music
  • Released: Feb 15, 2007

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